I am gonna take a quick break from Magic Kingdom and gonna take a minute to talk about Magic Bands and My Disney Experience – two very necessary items to maximize your Disney experience. I say this, because it will lighten your load and make sure that you get to do everything you want, and not worry about finding your ticket card to be able to hop into the FastPass lane (as well as making those fast pass reservations).
First! Magic Bands!
Magic Bands are relatively thin wrist bands that hold one heck of a lot of information for you, in a pretty seemingly Disney fashion. Magic Bands allow you to have an all-access pass in a small band.
- Unlocks the door of your Disney Park hotel room (if you are staying on property)
- Touch to enter Theme and Water parks (with valid theme park admission)
- Checking in at FastPass+ entrances
- Associating Disney Photopass images to your account (also can link it to your My Disney Experience account, without Photopass or Memory Maker purchase)
- Touch to charge food and merchandise purchases to your Disney Resort Hotel room bill
As for uses, that pretty much covers the basics. Even if you are not staying on property, it really does benefit you to have one on each of your party. For Disney, these are relatively cheap ($12.95-20). The solid color ones will be cheaper than those with graphic prints, but, some people prefer having their favorite character or movie on their band. Makes the experience a bit more…magical, if you may. The parks’ entrances use a finger scanner for each of the four areas, so a good rule of thumb is to wear your magic band on one wrist, and use your other hand to use for the finger scanner (and always use the same finger…I always do either my first finger or thumb). That’s about all I have for you on Magic Bands.
My Disney Experience.
This app is perfection. And let me tell you why. Everything you could possibly need to know about what is going on in the parks is right there on the app. Wait Times, Menus, what characters are out, where, almost everything you need! Like I said, this is an app for your phone – and it is available on Android and Windows phones as well as Apple. It will require you to make an account, but when you sign up for tickets and resorts, you give them your email address. They don’t email unless needed, like for reservations for dinner or making FastPass reservations in advancement of your trip.
Aside from that, you can look up on Disney Property these following things
- Attractions (which include wait times)
- Guest Services
- Resort Hotels
With clicking any of these tabs, it will bring up every spot that these come about. There will be filters you can place on your search, to narrow where you need to look. For instance, if you want to know what characters will be in….say….Hollywood Studios, it will bring up who and where and when they are out, so you can plan your rides and dines around this.
This is also a place where you can link up your tickets with your MagicBands, which will enable you to be able to make those reservations and link them to tickets, Magic Bands, and to the rest of your party. Here you can also view the PhotoPass pictures that get taken throughout the day. They will be watermarked, but this way you can buy things individually, instead of paying $200 for the Memory Maker (which is great for special moments, but for people that are on a budget, it’s a bit much).
There are a bunch of other things I could go on about when it comes to My Disney Experience, but as far as advice goes and laying out the gist of it, this is about all I got for you. If you have any questions, feel free to email me, or find me on my other forms of social media and shoot me a question.
BONUS!! Shop Disney Parks – app
So, this is an app that was launched in 2015, while I was in Orlando for my College Program, and that I got very familiar with as I worked in merchandising. Anyway, so, this app is pretty revolutionary in the fact that getting ahold of authentic Disney Merchandise used to be almost impossible. Not only does it give you access to some of the goods at Disney World, but it also will locate them on Disney Property for you, in the case that you are in Orlando and want to pick up your awesome new t-shirt or Duffy or whatever it is that turns your crank. I like to use this app when I’m not at Disney because it makes me feel like, if I wanted to, I could have that Duffy if I wanted.